Center for Liberal Strategies

Monday March 15th, 2010

What if Greece Were a Central European Country?

Filed under: Uncategorized — Ivan Krastev @ 09:25 AM

New posting of Ivan Krastev in the blog of Word Affairs:

Let’s face it, if Greece were a Central European country, the Greek crisis would never have happened. First, Germany and France were never going to allow a country known for its poor economic performance, bad political manners and genius for creative accounting to join the single currency union. Secondly, if by luck or negligence the Greece of Central Europe had ended up in the euro zone, Brussels was going to thoroughly scrutinize Athens’s finances. But Greece is not a Central European country. While the European Commission was crusading against corruption in the Yalta Club countries, the Club Med countries enjoyed the privilege of being treated as good Europeans without actually being good Europeans. Imagine that Bulgaria’s or Romanian’s prime minister controls 80 percent of the national media and is in the habit of spending his holidays entertaining prostitutes. Or imagine that the Hungarian prime minister—contrary to all advice coming from Brussels—declares that he will not freeze public sector wages, despite the severe economic crisis. It is difficult even to imagine the outcry that would follow. But what outrages Brussels in Sofia or Budapest simply worries it in Rome or Madrid.

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The older postings of Ivan Krastev you can find here.

Postings of other participants in the blog you can find here.

World Affairs

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